I attend a lot of tech meetups in Boston.
I’m a senior engineer with 20 years of experience software engineering in an Oracle Applications [PL/SQL] language and toolset background. As a veteran developer, I know best practices, have a history of playing all kinds of roles in a team [technofunctional], and Waterfall SDLC/Agile. I can learn new languages in a matter of weeks. Yet, I just got a rejection letter from a company saying snarkily that they were seeking “software engineers”, and that with my DB experience — they just don’t see it. Despite my background of presenting and attending technical groups in languages in their stack [a second unpaid job for me, which I do evenings and weekends, which people with kids couldn’t do], they said the lack of professional experience with one of the languages prevents them from giving me a tech screening, despite my ability to knock a fair tech interview out of the ballpark.
Meanwhile, I meet folks from Resilient Coders at meetups, standouts due to their skin color and ancestry only, and I see the challenges they face.
I recently talked with one of them about how frustrated I was that companies claim there’s a lack of talent in America, yet here they are: wading into the meetups like champs, facing the inevitable rejections from people who can’t see beyond the 20-something white bro they’re expecting to hire.